First langoustine landing of the year into Buckie provides a flying start to 2012 for Moray Seafoods –

First langoustine landing of the year into Buckie provides a flying start to 2012 for Moray Seafoods Published:  05 January, 2012

Following a short trip to the North Sea fishing grounds, trawler skipper Sandy West successfully completed the first landing of 2012 of langoustines (prawns) into Buckie, enabling local processing firm Moray Seafoods to get the New Year off to a flying start by ensuring its customers are kept supplied with the highest quality shellfish.

Skipper West and his four-man crew of the Fraserburgh-registered trawler Virtuous set off for the Fladen fishing grounds and after finding several good fishing marks was able to land its catch of excellent quality langoustines yesterday  (4 January)  into Moray Seafoods.

Waiting to welcome him on the quayside at Buckie was Fisheries Secretary Richard Lochhead and local MSP and Environment Minister Stewart Stevenson along with Moray Seafoods’ managing director Victor West.

Mr Lochhead said: “Scotland’s fishermen do an amazing job, often in very difficult and dangerous circumstances, to ensure we can enjoy the finest and freshest seafood.

“By landing in Buckie, the prawns can be taken straight to the factory for processing before making their way to the nation’s dinner plates.

“Scotland’s fish and shellfish is increasingly popular overseas – recognising the high quality of the product – and made up nearly 60 per cent of all Scottish food exports in 2010, with a value of £623 million. So, on behalf of all Scots, I’d like to thank our skippers for their efforts and wish them a successful 2012.”

Victor West said: “We are delighted with the efforts of Sandy and his crew, and this first landing provides an excellent platform to ensure Moray Seafoods’ has a successful year ahead. As a business that supports many local jobs,  we are totally dependent on our hardworking fishermen, which we always appreciate and respect.”

Since its acquisition by Associated Seafoods in July 2011, Moray Seafoods has been enjoying sustained growth, particularly in the important export market for langoustine and crab, and the company intends to further develop these markets over the coming year.

Sandy West said: “It is fantastic to make this first landing of the year and it always good to know that the langoustines landed today will soon be enjoyed on dining tables around Europe, which underlines the importance of our seafood industry to Scotland.”

Stewart Stevenson said: “Moray Seafoods is an important local employer and a vital part of the wider Banffshire economy so I’m delighted to be here today to give my backing to their support for quality, locally-landed langoustines.

 “The quality of Scotland’s produce is a key selling-point in the drive to boost our exports and langoustines are no exception.  I’m therefore delighted that Moray Seafoods intends to further develop their export markets in the coming year, which I hope will mean further benefits to Buckie and the local employment market.”